gifting 2016

In a perfect world everybody would love a homemade gift, that I could make.  And I would have the time to make all my gifts.  Unfortunately not everybody wants/needs what I can do. But for those who need/want/love/appreciate fabric and yarn that has passed through my fingers I am right on it making their gifts.

Along with these, I made a heat proof table runner for my mom, and crocheted dishrags and jam for one of the boys teachers.

And now I can stop for awhile, right? Wrong.  And I know that it is self imposed.  And I do love to sew and create. Nothing like a deadline to keep me going!  M’s birthday is January 14th, so I need to get on with cutting fabric for his 8yr quilt. I have started drawing and plotting. But with approximately 1050 2.5″ squares, it’s time to stop typing and start cutting.

Enjoy your holiday pause before the new year and all that comes along with it.

Merry Merry

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas, full of


A few years ago, my dad and I butchered some table legs that had been sitting around for too long.  My woodworking dad cut and notched, and then I added the colour-of course!

And this photo makes me think it’s time to change the colour of my living room wall. Although when you remove the Christmas red, it’s quite pleasant.  There are too many other walls in my house that need more attention; leave well enough alone Netta.


Enjoy whatever this holiday season brings you.


Sumac down

Well it was a rough year for this little tree in my yard, and now mother nature decided to end its suffering.


We had a big storm last night and down she came.  The last branch standing took just a few pushes and it came down too.  Rotten at the base.


But the shoots we left this summer are still there and we shall see what becomes of them in the new year. And it’s right on the fence line between us and the neighbours. Hopefully they leave the little shoots alone.  They have amazing soft fuzz still.


Much to sew

Much to sew and not much to show.

As usual, I have much more ambitious plans than I actually have time to accomplish.  So I sew morning, noon, and night.  Except when I have to work or take care of my family, or sleep.  Which actually doesn’t leave a ton of time for sewing!

Ever year we have a little Christmas exchange at the guild.  The challenge is set and you bring your contribution in a brown bag and leave it on the table.  At the end of the night you get to choose a brown bag as your prize.

This is the pixie basket I made


And this is the one I got in the exchange


Thanks to whoever made this one!

This year seems to be the year of the table runner. I made this one  for my son’s teacher. I made a Christmas one for myself last year, but had forgotten about it…so it’s kind of like new.


And my secret santa gift for work will be this one, still in progress


just keep sewing, just keep sewing.  There are much worse things to be doing!

busy busy

Yup, busy.  I think most everybody feels the busyness of this time of year, particularly makers.  I aspire to make as many of my Christmas gifts as possible.

So there is crocheting on the go, blanket and dishcloths.  Christmas cards in progress.  A few different table runners for assorted folk.  Secret Santa projects for the office and for the quilt guild.  And I always like to sew something very girly for my dear niece P in Calgary(that item is a secret for now).  And some baking is always a good way to get into the Christmas spirit, plus a warm oven helps to keep the house warm!

My older son has had the same teacher 2 years in a row, so year 2 requires a bit more thinking in terms of gifting.  NOT going to settle with soap or candles etc.  Hmm, maybe a table runner.   At the start of the year parent teacher interview I always ask their favorite colour and what colour is in their kitchen.  Mrs. R got blue/grey/white potholders last year.  I was thinking of Christmas, and then decided to use her colour scheme too.

Test palette


The Candy Canes didn’t make the cut, and I added a blue with sparkle, a snowflake, and a white on white snowflake.  Pieced, basted, quilted, it just needs to be trimmed and bound before Friday.


That was a good evenings work.

I bought this snowman material years ago, but just never found the right place for it.  I think it works well here.


Wishing you satisfying work, and not too much busyness that it removes the joy of the season.

delayed projects

Doing my entry for Quiltcon was fun and exciting, but didn’t leave room for many other projects that were building up in my sewing area. One project was some infinity scarves.  A friend and I were at the fabric store in September and there was some nice drapey fabric that was on sale, really cheap.  And I am always the one to step up for more projects, I chimed in ” with a meter of that I could sew a nice infinity scarf”.  I made myself one a few years ago.

Well I decided it was long past time to do this “quick ” project.

slippery fabric needs many pins


I double folder and pressed and pinned the cut sides of the meter of fabric, then double folded the ends together.  And Voila.


Originally my friend bought 2 meters so that I could make 2 scarves.  One for her and one for me as payment for making the other.  But then she decided that her mom would love one too, so she’s baking me a pecan pie instead.  Pretty good deal, I think.  She is a great baker.

And now I feel like going to the fabric store and looking for other soft drapey fabric to make another infinity scarf for myself.  But there are WAY too many other sewing projects to do before Christmas.

And M’s 8th birthday quilt.  I love quilts and love to make them, wrap up in them, and gift them.  But deep down I know that a person CAN have too many quilts.  I made baby quilts for both my boys, and decided that at age 4 they could use something bigger and more age appropriate.  That set a precedent of every 4 years( in my logical brain).  So at 8, I made a pixilated dragon for my oldest.


Well, M turns 8 in January, and I have narrowed it down to 2 subjects: a storm trooper(from star wars), or just pixilated sports.

Image result for pixelated stormtrooper
Image result for pixelated baseball
or something along this line.  Still not sure.  hmm. I really like the storm trooper, but when I have asked round about questions about redecorating his room, M says sports theme. I think I will think about this one after Christmas.
Good luck with your Christmas preparations.  I am looking forward to having a sew date with 2 friends on Friday.  Not sure what I will sew, but I am sure I will find something.

winter berries

It may be dull and brown and wet around here, but if you look around you can see bright little spots.  Winter berries!  They would be more obvious if there was snow on the ground to contrast their standout colours, but around here we only get a dusting of snow every few years. I took my camera out yesterday to see what I could find. The pyracantha ( sometimes called Firethorn) is all over the place here in Victoria, mostly along major roadways where I couldn’t get out and photograph it.  But you can see how they brighten up a hillside.


And sometimes there is a place to stop and get a close-up.  The abundance of berries on each branch always amazes me.


Arbutus trees are pretty common around here too.Image result for arbutus trees in victoria bc

Their distinctive red bark is lovely to look at in a park.  My friend’s dad once warned me never to have one in my yard… They drop bark peels throughout the year and drop leaves and flowers in the spring and summer.  The only time they are just nice to look at without cleanup is winter.  And that’s when you can see their berries.


On my berry hunting trip I found some berries that I was unable to identify

And then a traditional berry tree for this time of year. Holly! But not enough for me to unobtrusively cut a few branches for indoor decorating.


I have a holly tree across the street from my driveway, but no berries on it.  I wonder if it needs to reach a certain maturity? or maybe there are male and female trees that need to be near each other to produce berries?  I will have to research that one.

And then these lovely Viburnum berries. In my favorite colour.


I came home all inspired by what I had found and did a fabric pull for a Christmas project, berry themed of course.


Time to go and sew. Enjoy your Sunday.


sewing frenzy

so the last week has been me and my sewing machine and my Quiltcon quilt.  Everything else has been sidelined.  But after many late nights and aching fingers from hand binding on a tight schedule, my quilt has been submitted to Quiltcon.  Now the wait to see if it gets in.  Stress, nervous, excitement.  My first time entering a big competition. Did I do it well enough?  Did I take good enough photos?  Too late to change anything now, I just need to let it go.  I have entered the American Patchwork and Quilting Nine-Patch challenge.

I took  a nine patch, changed up the dimensions, and quilted the hell out of it.


even the shadow box around got lots of stitching


And I put the title in there too.  Nine Nines Floating.


I will wait for acceptance or denial from Quiltcon before I show you the whole thing.

And now a moment to breath, and then get fully into Christmas sewing and making and decorating.  It is December 1st, time to giddy up!